A tank in peril

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
I just came from a local reefers tank. She asked me to come and help her through her disaster. I'm asking for help in formulating a plan as I agreed to help her.

It's a 2 year old 300 gallon reef full of high end fish that all look pretty rough. Flukes and ich for sure, proba ly more. Nasty toxic dinos I think are coolia ( positive id pending) and bryopsis. There are a lot of corals, but most are dead or dying. Inverts are alive but not really moving at all.

Instead of removing the fish to a hospital tank ( that will be a challenge) I was wondering if I should remove corals and inverts making it a fowlr. If I did that, how could i treat the fish? I typically use CP but have no experience in fowlr. This might be a candidate for h202? Corals are likely goners anyway.

She has given up, but I want to turn it around for her.

All advice is welcome.
 

Humblefish

Dr. Fish
Sounds like you have 2 options:
  1. Remove all the corals/inverts and dose CP. I have successfully used this strategy to help LFS clear their fish systems of Ich, velvet, brook and uronema: Dose 40mg/gal, wait 24 hours and dose 40mg/gal again. Every day thereafter dose 4mg/gal for 30 days (to account for degradation.) I've even had some LFS owners dose 20mg/gal every 5 days and it still works. There will be some appetite suppression, but most of the fish will continue eating enough to get them through the 30 days. For flukes, I would dose General Cure twice as Prazipro + CP don't mix.
  2. Dose H2O2 every 12 hours for 30 days: @Jessican has been dosing 1ml per 8 gallons, and after 1 week things are going fairly well. This approach is obviously a lot more experimental than Door #1, so let's see if @Jessican can chime in with some first hand experience here.
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
Thanks Bobby. The tank will be returned to a reef (hopefully) so I should avoid copper? What about residual CP after the treatment, will it be fully broken down so that I can restore a reef in the tank?

CP is going to crush the bryopsis fast,(its very thick) any ideas managing the dieoff?

Will CP kill dinos? That die off would be massive as well.
 
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Humblefish

Dr. Fish
Thanks Bobby. The tank will be returned to a reef (hopefully) so I should avoid copper? What about residual CP after the treatment, will it be fully broken down so that I can restore a reef in the tank?

CP is going to crush the bryopsis fast,(its very thick) any ideas managing the dieoff?

Will CP kill dinos? That die off would be massive as well.
Removing copper will take longer, but CP is faster to remove just by running carbon. A public aquarium I advise has done some testing, and it doesn't look like rock/sand absorbs Chloroquine as much as copper. However, a safe rule of thumb is don't return the corals until you see algae growth resume. CP doesn't kill corals directly; rather it kills the Zooxanthellae living inside all corals. This is why inverts oftentimes survive treatment.

CP should kill both bryopsis and dinos quickly. I'm more worried about the dinos releasing toxins into the water as they're dying. You might need to run carbon until all the Dinos as gone as an insurance policy. Even though this will also remove the Chloroquine (a quagmire).

Will h2o2 at that dosage kill inverts, dinos or bryopsis?
It should kill both dinos & bryopsis eventually, but not harm inverts at that low of a dosage.
 

Humblefish

Dr. Fish
Maybe dose H2O2 first to take care of the dinos & bryopsis, and manage the disease problems. Then switch over to CP to finish the job if the fish are still showing symptoms of disease.

It would be ideal to run carbon alongside H2O2 (for the dinos toxins), but it's possible that carbon decomposes hydrogen peroxide, thus making treatment less effective: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/jctb.2560
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
Large water change with as much manual removal as possible, hook up my uv and do a 2 day black out with heavy carbon. That should get a large chunk of dinos out of the way.

Then I can dose h2o2 for 30 days, without carbon. I can add it if I see evidence of toxins harming anything. Snails should go before fish I think?

Finally CP if needed.

Meanwhile I can attempt to keep corals alive In a qt for 76 days. I can set that up at my house so I can Inspect and dip as needed.

Sound reasonable? What am I missing?
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
I could do a qt/fallow, but it would be far less convenient for me. I'm willing to do that if I must, but if I go h2o2 and/or CP I wont have to haul 50 fish to my house and my wife will be far less irritated with me!

Thanks so much for the help!
 

Jessican

Active member
So given what I’m seeing in my tank right now, I’d at least try the peroxide dosing option if moving the fish to a hospital tank isn’t feasible. It sounds like whatever is in the tank isn’t terribly virulent, if the fish are living with it (i.e., I doubt it’s velvet). I haven’t had a single death of fish, inverts (snails, shrimp, clams, crabs, anemones, etc), or corals so far in the week that I’ve been dosing ~1 mL per 8 gal every 12 hours. We think my tank has brook, or it could be velvet, but a week in, no one shows signs of any disease.

It should eventually take care of most algae as well, although I’m not sure about bryopsis. You might have to take a multi-step approach here and attack one thing at a time - treat the fish, get water parameters under control, then attack the dinos/bryopsis. I’ve heard some stories of success against those using Vibrant, but I don’t know if that would be safe to dose alongside peroxide or not.

Do you have any photos?
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
Thanks Jessican!

No photos, I can get some when I visit again.

I'm not entirely sure what all is present in the tank as far as fish parasites. I see Ich and flukes but new additions reportedly.die fast, so velvet is a possibility as well.

The bryopsis is very thick. Several inches covering every rock in the tank. It apparently started after a blackout for dinos killed some fish and all the macro in the refugium. I'm not concerned about bryopsis , in fact I think I should leave it until dinos are under control. I can always use fluc for that later.

So , I'm left with unspecified parasites and dinos. Peroxide may help with all parasites and dinos.. If it fails I can either use CP in tank or qt the fish properly.

At this point I feel h2o2 may be worth trying.
Thanks everyone.for all the help, any other put is welcome.
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
Hi all.

I got an official start on this project today. I set up a tank for coral at my house. I set up more water storage for the project tank, made RO and NSW.

I also started to clean up the tank. Moved some rock around and started picking through the corals. I found red bugs, red planaria, MEN, pyramid snails and of course, aptasia. No wonder corals are struggling. I blew off the rocks and sand, placed filter socks in the sump and filter pads inside the display to catch some.dinos. I also scoped the dinos again and confired coolia sp.

Tomorrow I will haul all the.corals I will try to save to my house. I feel a little strange. Bringing all these pests to my house on purpose lol. Tonight I am making sure I have duplicate utensils ready and trying to eliminate ways to cross contaminate my own systems.

This is going to be a lot of work!
 

GoldeneyeRet

Active member
I cant find the Info for h202 in a tank...lights off, no carbon. How about skimmer, flow pumps, uv... all need to be off?
 

Humblefish

Dr. Fish
Skimmer off for the whole course or just for a period after dosing?
I would only run it for a few hours at a time before the next dose of H2O2. In some situations, H2O2 can last in a system for 8-10 hours. And there's no telling at this point whether or not a skimmer will remove it prematurely. The longer H2O2 lingers in the system, the better.
 

Jessican

Active member
For what it’s worth, I haven’t turned off my skimmer, only removed carbon. My pH drops too low without it so I just opened the gate wide open so that it’s not really skimming anything out. The peroxide still seems to be working for me even with it on.
 
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